GIFTS were God’s idea. He is the original, and supreme GIFT GIVER.  He GAVE us life.  He, alone gives wisdom, peace, strength, forgiveness, and joy.  He GIVES us the Holy Spirit, and best of all, eternal life.   I could fill this page with everything that God gives, and there would still be more.  Nature alone is a big showcase full of God’s gifts:  Rain in season, plants to nourish us, the sun to warm us, the spectacular stars in the sky.  And on, and on.

JAMES 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

God’s gifts are altogether good and perfect.

So, I have to wonder; When did the word “GIFT” became so quickly and easily associated with STUFF…With commercialized products and all kinds of material posessions?

I don’t think the stuff is altogether wrong (we need materials goods, and God is the one who provides even those,) but it must sadden His heart to think of how we, even as His children, associate the word GIFT so quickly with material possessions.  Especially this time of the year.

I know the battle well:  My four boys are really excited about Christmas this year–and their “wish list” began months ago.  As hard as I try to teach my three-year-old about Jesus and the heart of the season, if you ask him to tell you about Christmas, I’m pretty sure he’ll begin to rattle off his most recent  list.  And it isn’t very spiritual. 

I’ve still got some time to work with that three-year-old.

But what about the rest of us?  What occupies our mind as we talk “gifts” this year?  Are we caught up in the holiday rush in such a way that we’ve also lost sight of the the gifts right in front of our eyes?  Have we forgotten the GIVER?

I know this time of year can be challenging.

So this season, I am on a mission.  I’m re-claiming the Word GIFT in my home.  It may not change everything, but I figure something has to stick.

Sure, I’ll still wrap that STUFF, and put it under the tree.  I won’t block Santa’s entry (though seldom will he find a fireplace in our neighborhood ;))  Instead of going into head-to-head battle with materialism, or denying its existence, I am simply turning UP the volume on my own parade:

I’ve been talking about GOD’S GIFTS all of the time.  I am purposefully using the word every chance I get:  I’m calling each new day a “gift.”  Before meals I purposefully thank God for the GIFT of our food.  I tell my boys that they are a GIFT to me, and that their Daddy is a GIFT.  The joy of the season:  A gift.  God’s presence in our home:  The greatest gift!

They may get tired of mom’s obsession with the word, but by golly, they can never say that the only GIFTS they have known have a price tag and require batteries.

God’s gfits will be woven throughout every part of our holiday this year, and they will come in the form of friendships, fellowship, quiet, and rest.  They will be seen, heard, and shared.  They will be a central focus in our home.

So Moms: Wanna join me on my little mission?  Gather those kids around and have some fun discussing what a REAL GIFT IS.  Let them throw out their ideas as well.  No wrong answers here.  My kids’ lists range from great waves to surf on, to the stars in the sky…and everything in between.  Changing our focus as moms can shift the heart of the whole home!